Asian stocks have risen for a third consecutive session after Chinese leaders pledged to allow more private investment in state-controlled industries and expand farmers’ land rights post the Communist Party plenum meeting. The initial reaction to the Chinese political reforms was a negative one but as we’re getting more detail, it looks like this is a revolutionary change.
Current Fed vice chairman Janet Yellen made clear in her confirmation hearing before the senate banking committee last week that it’s important policy makers don’t cut support for the U.S. economy too soon given the limited range of tools available to the central bank. Yellen’s dovish comments have gone some way in supporting the current strength seen in U.S equities, preventing any sell-offs before the traditionally strong Christmas period.
The Federal Open Market Committee will probably wait to taper its bond buying to $70 billion at its March 18-19 meeting, from the current pace of $85 billion a month. The S&P 500 has now traded higher for 6 consecutive weeks, highlighting the positive effect that Yellen’s accommodative stance is having.